Telcos are lagging behind their counterparts in other industries when it comes to digital transformation but are outpacing them in the amount they spend on innovation, new research has found.

The survey of 600 firms, 100 of them telcos, across the US and Western Europe by Forrester and Virtusa scored them across a range of metrics to give them an overall digital transformation score out of 45.

The telecoms industry achieved 25.30 out of 45, behind the scores attained by the retail, banking, healthcare and insurance sectors but ahead of the media sector. Retail was the best performing sector with 28.17.

Telcos were behind the average score of 8.81 for the transformation of customer experience – a key digital transformation KPI – attaining 8.15.

They also lagged on business innovation, scoring 8.45 compared to the average of 8.61.

However, telcos were ahead of other firms on operational excellence, with a score of 8.7 compared to the average of 8.64 across all the industries surveyed.

They also led other industries in terms of planned investments, with the industry boasting the highest proportion of firms planning to increase their innovation budget at 91 percent.

This was ahead of retail at 90 percent and banking and healthcare both at 86 percent.

Frank Palermo, Global Head of Digital Solutions, Virtusa, said: “Firms that are obsessed with their customer’s experience can achieve significant operational efficiencies and put innovation at the heart of their respective cultures and are the ones that will see the greatest benefits from digital transformation.

Read more: Vendors under pressure as operators push on with digital transformation

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